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Journalists’ Support Fund

The Journalists’ Support Fund is a fund jointly established by the union, media houses and industry associations to assist journalists who have been subjected to threats, persecution and other forms of harassment.

APPLY FOR ASSISTANCE

Who’s eligible?

  • Assistance can be applied for by people producing journalistic work who have been subject to repeated, prolonged threats, inappropriate pressure, or harassment or online abuse as a result of their work.
  • In exceptional cases, assistance is also granted to a person who is subject to a single but particularly serious threat.
  • Assistance is awarded to people producing journalistic content, who primarily work for media outlets that comply with basic agreement of the Council for Mass Media. The definition includes all those who produce journalistic content, including e.g. people working on visuals, and photographers.
  • Assistance is provided primarily to people who fall outside employment security, such as occupational health care. They include freelancers or those working in various short-term employment relationships.
  • In granting assistance, account is taken of the applicant’s employment history in terms of journalistic content.

What kind of assistance does the Fund provide?

  • Assistance is provided for the expenses, or their immediate repercussions, incurred by an event or series of events that has or have taken place or are taking place.
  • The Fund provides conditional assistance for a possible legal process.
  • The Fund has contracted crisis therapists who are versed in the area of threats to journalists and with whom consultations can be made at short notice paid for by the Fund.
  • The Fund provides assistance for getting legal advice for filing a criminal complaint.
  • The Fund provides assistance for hiring an assistant for gathering information needed to make a request for a criminal investigation.
  • The Fund provides assistance for installing security equipment.
  • The Fund provides assistance for loss of earnings, e.g. during work disability.
  • Assistance can also be applied for from the Fund for other unexpected costs arising from the situation.
  • Assistance is not awarded for purposes fulfilled by general social security, insurance reimbursement, or employer’s obligations, unless, for example due to matters of urgency reasons, such steps are justified.
  • The Fund deals with applications confidentially and the names of recipients of assistance are not made public.

How to apply?

A free-from report should be attached to the application sent to the governing body of the Fund concerning the situation of the applicant, the purpose and cost estimate of the assistance applied for, and other relevant annexed information, such as a copy of the criminal complaint that has been filed. The application is submitted using the Jokes online grant application system.

The application must contain details of

  • Your employment history in journalism
  • Specific examples of threats and harassment, duration and repetition, and the work assignments that may have possibly triggered the situation.
  • A criminal complaint, if done.
  • The application must state what kind of costs the assistance is for and the amount of financial harm caused by the situation, such as loss of earnings, or the need for therapy or security equipment.
  • Specified credible cost calculation for which assistance is sought.
  • Other supporting documents: a statement of measures and assistance provided by employers and clients, details of your own insurance cover, use of union legal expenses insurance, sick leave and possible other assistance or support.
  • The recipient of a assistance from the Fund undertakes to report in freeform in writing how and when the assistance received has been used. The use of the assistance must be reported on within three months of its use.

YOU CAN SUPPORT THE FUND BY MAKING A DONATION

The assistance account is FI14 8000 1300 5385 85, DABAFIHH.

On 7 October 2019, the National Police Board’s Gambling Administration issued a Fundraising Grant RA / 2019/826 to the Foundation to Promote Journalistic Culture Culture (Jokes) for the period 07.10.2019 – 06.10.2020. The permit is valid for the entire territory of Finland except the Åland Islands. Assistance from fundraising is for journalists who have been subject to threats and is based on applications. Fund assistance may include, for example, the cost of crisis therapy, legal assistance (situation mapping and legal advice), or the installation of alarm equipment. The practical implementation of fundraising collection is done by Jokes.

For more information about applying for assistance and donating to the Fund, contact Anna Kähkönen, the representative of the Jokes foundation, anna.kahkonen@jokes-saatio.fi or Tel: +358 50 551 3961.

FUND MANAGEMENT

The Foundation is managed and accounted for by the Foundation to Promote Journalistic Culture (Jokes).

The Fund’s work is guided by a separate management board, chaired by Matti Posio of Lännen Media, and Timo Huovinen from YLE and Marja Honkonen from Journalist magazine as members. Anna Kähkönen, Jokes representative, serves as the secretary of the board. Assiastance is granted by the Jokes board based on proposals from the Fund’s management board.